“There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God …” (Romans 3:22-23)
We live in a very time-sensitive culture. We have appointments, deadlines, and alarms. Games kick-off at a specific time. Theaters list show times. Microwaves have clocks. I time the various stages of making my coffee (for the record, there are three stages to making coffee with an Aeropress, each lasting 40 seconds).
When Paul describes the human condition in Romans 3, he uses a word (hustereo) that has the idea of always being behind — not in terms of importance but in terms of being late. In other words, we are terminally slow. In the words of Kenneth Boa, “We are in the race; we just do not ever win.”
It’s not just that we lack the glory of God, we are incapable of catching up to it. We fall short. We are late … again and again.
The gospel not only closes the gap between God and humans, it declares those who place their faith in Jesus to be winners in the race of righteousness. It’s not that we run faster or longer. Jesus runs for us. He finishes the race that we could not finish and that is the race to make ourselves right with God.
You don’t have to be late again.